Resolving Issues Before They Become a Problem

When I talk about my salesman/sales manager profession, the first thing I always say is, “Sales is tough!” There aren’t many professions in which getting told “no” 9 out of 10 times is par for the course! As a sales manager, it’s crucial to spot issues with your sales team and resolve them before they become problems. Having the ability to spot potential complications with a deal or perspective client is key.

These ideas and practices have helped me master this skill.

  • Develop a personal relationship. At the end of the day, we are all human with professional and personal goals, fears, wants and needs. The quicker you can get on a personal level with a team member or prospect, the easier it will be to identify issues that they may have with you, your product or service.
  • Be vulnerable! For most, it is tough to admit that there is something wrong or bothering you. Many people will try and “tough through it” and keep grinding. Admitting some of your weaknesses, struggles and fears first makes it easier for someone to dig into their issues once they hear that they are not alone.
  • Ask good questions and intently listen. At Acquirent, we say that top sales people “ask great questions” and “shut up and listen” to responses. These principles remain the same for when you spot an issue on your sales team. By asking great open-ended questions, it opens up a conversation that reveals the core issues an individual is experiencing. Once the conversation starts, zip it and listen!
  • Ask for solutions. Whenever a problem arise, try to come up with three or four potential solutions before you ask for help. The solutions may not be the “right” one, but it puts you in the mind frame of problem solving and keeps you away from complaining. Encourage your colleagues and team to do the same.

These relationship skills have definitely helped me identify issues and address them before they became big problems. But I know there are other ways to approach issues. How do you identify and decipher dilemmas?